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Market Update for the Month Ending January 31, 2022

Equity markets had a rough start to the year, with concerns about inflation and rising case growth in the first half of January leading to sell-offs for all three major U.S. indices. The S&P 500 lost 5.17 percent in January despite a late-month rally that helped offset declines from earlier in the month.

Market Thoughts for November 2021

Brad McMillan, Commonwealth's CIO, recently shared the November economic and market update from Commonwealth Financial Network.

Market Update for the Month Ending August 31, 2021

Markets continued to rally in August, with all three major U.S. indices setting new record highs. While there was some mid-month volatility, markets were able to bounce back swiftly toward month-end.

Market Update for the Month Ending April 30, 2021

April was a strong month for U.S. equity markets, with the three major indices setting all-time highs. Markets were supported by public health improvements and the most recent round of federal stimulus.

Market Update for the Quarter Ending March 31, 2021

U.S. stock markets saw gains for the month and quarter, but not all stocks did well. Higher interest rates led to some volatility, especially for growth and technology companies.

Economic News Showing Surprising Strength

For the fourth week in a row, the big picture continues to be very positive. On the medical front, all three major data series—new cases, positive testing rates, and hospitalizations—have continued to trend down, while vaccinations continue to scale up. If these trends persist, we are through the worst of the pandemic and should see further improvement.

Has Washington Gone Blue?

Wednesday, January 6, 2021, will be remembered in the history books—for a couple of reasons. First, while Congress met to count the inaugural votes, we anticipated that members from both houses would be objecting to electors from some states. What we didn’t anticipate was that the Capitol would be besieged by an angry mob that delayed, but did not prevent, the ultimate announcement of Biden’s victory. We also learned the outcome of the Georgia Senate runoff, which saw both seats won by Democrats. As a result, come the inauguration, all three arms of government will now be under the control of the Democratic Party. What will a blue government mean for us as investors?

2021 Market Outlook

We’re nearing the end of a hard year, with the pandemic raging once again and the economy starting to slow. On the other hand, vaccines will soon be coming into play, companies are adapting, and there is the possibility of a spending boom next year. Despite risks ahead (e.g., the chance of another surge of infections with holiday travel), could 2021 be better for medical news, for the economy, and for the markets?

Looking Back at the Markets in October and Ahead Through November 2020

Authored by Brad McMillan, Commonwealth CIO:

A lot has changed in the past week. I normally try and get this post up earlier in the month, but with everything that has happened—and which has demanded comment—this is the earliest I could fit it in. But that is a good thing, as the "looking forward" piece is now going to be rather different than it would have been last week.

Is a Hopeful Market a Vulnerable One?

As of Monday, October 12th, the markets spiked again, taking the major indices back close to new highs. The S&P 500 closed at 3,534, less than 2 percent below the all-time high of September 2, just before markets tumbled. The Dow and Nasdaq results were similar. Clearly, the markets think everything is awesome. Is everything awesome?